2018 McLaren 570GT quick spin review and driver rating

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The McLaren 570GT is the “entry-level” McLaren, representing the British automaker’s Sport Series and slotting under the Super Series models like the 720S. The 570GT, like all McLarens, uses a twin-turbo V8 and a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. In the , the engine displaces 3.8 liters and makes 562 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. The GT is the twin to the 570S, though for 2018 you can get the GT with the Sport Pack, giving the GT the best of both cars.

The $5,950 Sport Pack changes the car’s dampers and steering rack, pulling them closer in line with the 570S. The adaptive damping and stability control are tuned the same as on the S model. Our car also comes with carbon-ceramic brakes, Pirelli P-Zero Corsa tires, 10-spoke wheels ($6,200), carbon-fiber trim ($3,090) and a 12-speaker Bowers & Wilkins audio system ($2,280). All in, the car came out to $236,220.

Editor-in-chief Greg Migliore: The 570GT is a brilliant car. It’s powerful, has standout design and is one of the reasons is carving a niche against other European exotics. When the company relaunched its automotive business a decade ago, there were legitimate questions as to why an enthusiast would buy one. Driving this machine on a gorgeous Friday morning with the windows vented, I couldn’t help but think that uncertainty has been largely put to rest.

Zero to 60 in 3.3 seconds? That feels slow. I pulled up to a stoplight, goosed the throttle and effortlessly hit 60 as I blitzed by dawdling traffic. The brakes are instantaneous and direct. The steering is connected and . Tuned for the track, it was more than confidence-inspiring when I had to pull a hard left as another stoplight turned yellow. Oh, and you’re so low to the ground. That really hit home when I found myself looking up at a GTI. That’s low.

Associate Editor Reese Counts: I like but don’t love the 570GT. Yes, it’s astoundingly quick. The 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 packs plenty of power. It handles well, with communicative steering and a firm suspension that doesn’t punish you over rough pavement. It’s relatively practical, too. The interior has a number of small bins, and the luggage shelf above the engine provides an extra bit of storage. Still, it’s not enough to win me over.

There are a number of little things that bug me. First off, you can’t see the infotainment screen while wearing polarized sunglasses. That’s unacceptable in any car, much less one that costs more than $200,000. I had some minor Bluetooth issues, too. Then there’s the engine. Yes, it’s punchy, but it lacks character. The exhaust note — even with the sport exhaust — is less symphony and more cacophony. Compared to a Lamborghini V10 or a Porsche flat-six, it just doesn’t hold up. When you pay this much for a car, you want a little bit of drama.

Finally, the 570GT might have the single most infuriating seat controls of any vehicle I’ve ever driven. They’re placed on the inside of the seat, right next to the center console. Their shape is nebulous, and you have to sit there and fiddle about to figure out what button changes what setting. I’ve driven hundreds of cars over the years. Nothing comes close to being this bad.

Don’t get me wrong. This isn’t a problem with McLaren. The 720S is a phenomenal machine, but the 570GT doesn’t speak to me in the same way. The fantastic driving dynamics don’t make up for some some really frustrating details.

Video Production Manager Eddie Sabatini: The 570GT felt out of place to me on city streets. I wouldn’t wear a three-piece suit to a tractor pull, and I wouldn’t daily drive a McLaren. This thing belongs on a track or wide open twisty roads – not the stop-start monotony of rush hour. My wheel time with the McLaren was frustrating. The car felt handcuffed in the crossover-packed prison that is Woodward Avenue at 5 p.m. on a Wednesday.

Sure, it turns heads at stoplights, and the doors open coolly, but so does the BMW i8, and the i8 never felt caged to me, like the 570GT did on the drive to the office. I’m not disparaging the McLaren — it’s an impressive, beautiful, and serious machine to be sure. But to get a true sense of what it can do, I’d like to set it free on the Nürburgring.





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